One of the many theories regarding the cause of sarcopenia, age-related loss of muscle mass and strength, is that impaired processing of the essential amino acid leucine is a significant cause. If this is the case, then leucine supplementation should help to some degree. Similar suggestions have been made for a few other aspects of aging – that we should assign a modest fraction of the blame to the typically lower protein intake observed in older people, as tissues find themselves lacking sufficient raw materials needed to maintain themselves. The study here suggests that this is not the case, or at least that the contribution of reduced protein intake is small in comparison to the other mechanisms of degenerative aging.
Regardless of whether an adult is young or old, male or female, their recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for protein is the same: 0.8g/kg/day. Many experts and national organizations recommend dietary protein intakes greater than the recommended allowance to maintain and promote muscle growth in older adults. However, few rigorous studies have evaluated whether higher protein intake among older adults provides meaningful benefit.
“It’s amazing how little evidence there is around how much protein we
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